Westphalian Horse Breed History
Westphalia is the largest state in Germany and home to the Westphalian warmblood horse.
Horse breeding is a tradition in Westphalia dating back centuries. In 1826 the National stud in Warendorf was founded for organized breeding of cavalry horses crossing East Prussian stallions with Oldenburgs, Hannoverians and Anglo-Norman horses.
In the early years before the tractor first came on the scene, the Westphalian was considered the quintessential farm horse—the horse that could plow the field, pull a cart to town and even carry a rider.
Today, the Westphalian is bred for versatility: pulling a carriage, jumping, dressage, and eventing.
Westphalian Horse Characteristics
The Westphalian has a lighter build than some other warmbloods, with strong well-muscled hindquarters, nicely set neck that comes high out of the withers, shoulders with good angles and a lovely freedom of movement. Yet, it’s difficult to pinpoint the exact conformation of a Westphalian. Since they are not specialists for any one type of sport, one Westphalian can look different from another.
Westphalians are branded on the hip with an outlined W with a small design over it. The breed stands 15.3 to 16.2 hand high and is seen in all solid colors.
For More Information:
- Westfalen Horse Association of America, www.westfalenhorse.com
This horse breed profile was originally published on December 15, 2006.